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Responder News: APIs - Helping Responders Communicate

Responder News: APIs - Helping Responders Communicate

Release Date: 
February 1, 2016

The Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) is providing funding to the Department of Commerce Public Safety Communications Research program (PSCR) to research and prototype a secure Application Program Interface (API) as part of the Broadband Demonstration Network: Local Control project.

Generic image of an ambulance and first responders connected by light-weight lines.Local control is a nationwide need listed as a priority objective and service differentiator for the First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet) and public safety practitioners across the country. APIs can help public safety organizations meet local control requirements.

An API is a set of routines, tools and protocols to help responders develop communications software. APIs tell software components how they should interact and ensures pieces of a program work together. This API will help first responders send information over broadband networks. Different organizations can use the same tool to meet their own unique needs.

The prototype demonstration will allow verified users to implement changes to quality of service, priority and preemption policy modifications. S&T and PSCR will distribute the test results to the public safety community and stakeholder organizations such as the National Public Safety Telecommunications Council.

This research and prototype effort will be followed by additional work on local control. S&T intends to continue supporting first responders by providing them with the tools they need to save lives while staying safe.

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